Shire Update

Frank Robinson Park, free overnight stays for Grey Nomads – coming soon
Clarence Town and Gresford have great caravan parks, but Dungog has lagged behind.  Some time ago, the Council voted to turn part of Frank Robinson Park – the old camping ground by the river – into a Roadside Rest Area, with free stays up to two nights for self-contained vehicles.  As usual, the bureaucracy is long-drawn out, but we're nearly there! 

Approvals have been provided to us and road widening plans are complete.  Registration of the plans and the associated gazetting is expected in late September meaning the rest area should be operational in October, just in time for summer!

That's more families visiting and spending money in the Shire, and more accommodation for our burgeoning events programme.
 
What a good-looking September for events:
Dungog Shire's Events Programme is powering along.   Bravo to retail businesses that stay open, putting out the Welcome Mat.  No Bravo to one retail business owner, heard recently saying: “I've got better things to do!”

First weekend:  1st -2nd Sep:  AGOG,  A Feast of Foreign Films, Supper behind the screen
Second Weekend:  8th Sep, Pedalfest: Cycling, music, dancing and food at Bandon Grove; 8th - 17th Sep:  Dungog Arts Society Art Show at 96 Dowling Street, and an opening Cocktail Party.
Third Weekend: 16th -17th Sep: The Hunter Polo Challenge, picnic polo at Wirragulla Polo Club - fast, exciting, with world class players and over 200 horses.
Fourth weekend:  23rd Sep, Dungog Country Garden Ramble...peek into 11 stunning gardens; 23rd September: Valley Team Penning Arena Sorting: A team of three fast riders on horseback have 60 to 90 seconds to separate three specific cattle from a mob and pen them.
Fifth Weekend: 30th Sep:  Australian Stock Horse Show – Camp draft Action at the Show Ground; 30th September:  Octoberfest at Wallarobba Hall.  (I know, it's September) Roll up and enjoy the fun and music.

For information refer to www.visitdungog.com.au  or phone the Visitor Info Centre on 4992 2212.

Bridging the Gaps:

Innovation Fund Success:
Council has been successful in gaining $105,000 under the NSW OLG Innovation Fund on a 70:30 funding for the replacement of a small timber bridge structure.  Council is currently finalising agreements.  Not a lot of money, in the world of bridge building, but every little counts...more info soon.

Railway owned Tin Bridge on Dungog Road load limited
The “Tin Bridge” on Dungog Road, the one over the railway line near the eastern end of Horns Crossing Road and belonging to Country Rail, is now load limited.  We understand that this bridge is budgeted for replacement during the current financial year.  Queries please call the Country Rail Network Hotline 1300 661 390.
 
NRMA reports - we think we've got a roads problem?   Read on...
Local councils across NSW need to invest $1.96 billion to fix the infrastructure backlog according to the latest report released today by the NRMA.

Over 80 per cent of Australia’s roads are maintained by local councils, with many struggling to fund the work. The NRMA reports a 13.2 per cent rise in the backlog deficit between 2014-15 and 2015-16.  It's even more severe in regional NSW, with the deficit rising 17.2 per cent from $1.33 billion in 2014-15 to $1.56 billion in 2015-16.

The NRMA is calling for a long term plan across all levels of government. Key recommendations  include fast tracking the Roads to Recovery funding program, delivering a share of the fuel excise levy to local councils and providing local councils with low interest infrastructure and specific investment funds.

Bravo NRMA for helping to highlight our issues.  For more information go to the My NRMA website:  https://www.mynrma.com.au/community/news-and-media-centre/infrastructure-backlog-data-reveals-holes-in-roads-funding

Nancy Knudsen

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Previous Mayoral Updates

Mayoral Update 21.6.17

Mayoral Update 28.6.17

Mayoral Update 12.7.17

Mayoral Update 25.7.17

Mayoral Update 1.8.17

Mayoral Update 9.8.17

Shire Update 16.8.17

Shire Update 23.8.17